RAYAGADA: Six gram panchayats have been cut off from Kalyansinghpur block headquarters after a fair weather temporary bridge over Kalyani river was washed away following flash floods in the upper catchment area on Thursday.The temporary bridge was constructed by the Rural Works department last year to restore communication to the cut-off areas. The main bridge was completely washed away on July 15 last year due to flash floods and the temporary structure had been serving as a vital link between the cut-off areas and the block headquarters.
The residents of the affected villages including Parshalli, Sunakhandi, Palama, Kandhakatipada, Pujariguda and some areas of Kalyansinghpur will now have to cover 30 km to reach the block headquarters.Sources said with the collapse of the bridge, school students, patients, pregnant women and the differently-abled will be the worst sufferers. The bridge was also a vital link between the particularly vulnerable tribal group Dongaria Kondhs of Niyamgiri hills and the rest of the district.
Meanwhile, district Collector Guha Poonam Tapas Kumar said the State Government has sanctioned around `7 crore for construction of a new bridge over the river and the tender will be floated soon. She assured that alternative arrangements would be made for the affected residents soon.